October 12, 2010

Pick a Potato, Any Potato!

 (photo by Airn, Dreamstime.com)

White . . . yellow . . . blue . . . purple . . . red . . . long . . . round.

Bake . . . broil . . . fry . . . boil . . . mash.

Just how do you pick a potato?

A potato's starch content determines how it should be used.  Generally, the rule is:  More starch means less moisture, meaning the potato will have a fluffier texture when cooked.

Russets are often called baking or Idaho potatoes.  They are high starch and have coarse dark skin and white flesh.  Russets are best for baking, mashing, or making french fries.

Round Whites are often called Eastern potatoes.  They are low starch with smooth, light tan skin.  They are great as scalloped or roasted side dishes, or as potato salad.

Yukon Gold potatoes have a golden inside and a butter flavor. They are medium starch and are good baked, mashed, or roasted.

New potatoes can be any kind; they are simply picked before maturity. Their skin may not adhere during cooking.

Round reds have rosy red skin with white, low starch flesh. These potatoes are usually round, and good in salads or boiled.

Blues and Purples are low starch with a slightly nutty flavor.  These are unusual, so you may have difficulty finding them.

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